Editorial: Guns on campus

Kansas university officials should continue to push back on the contention that it makes sense to sanction the carrying of concealed weapons on campuses.

December 30, 2012


In the wake of the recent mass shooting at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school, the chairman of the Kansas Board of Regents predicted another heated battle in the Kansas Legislature over allowing concealed guns to be carried on university campuses across the state.

State Sen.-elect Forrest Knox, R-Altoona, already has said he will push for a bill that allows people with concealed-carry permits to take their weapons into public buildings. In the 2012 session, when he was a member of the Kansas House, Knox got a similar bill through the House after it was amended to allow universities and hospitals to exempt themselves. However, the bill died in a Senate committee.

Knox and others argue that preventing law-abiding people with concealed-carry permits from taking their weapons into public buildings is an invitation to criminals to illegally carry guns into those buildings. University officials take the other side of the argument, saying that increasing the number of guns on campuses would increase the risk of violence and possibly prove confusing in an emergency situation.

This debate, in various forms, is taking place all across the nation since 26 people, including 20 elementary students were killed in Newtown earlier this month. It’s an important debate that also should include discussions about the role that mental health treatment and what many people see as a culture of violence in America contribute to such tragic incidents. Americans seem to have a special relationship with their guns that isn’t common in other cultures and there may be something officials can learn from looking at laws in other countries.

Regents Chairman Tim Emert said the nine-member board will continue to oppose concealed carry on campuses, and acknowledged it will be interesting to see what direction the Legislature takes on the issue in the 2013 session. Both the Kansas House and Senate will have many new members and a generally more conservative slant.

The overriding goal of any discussion about weapons is to try to increase the safety of people in Kansas and throughout the nation. While some advocates are certain that having more weapons in more locations will accomplish that goal, university officials and others are right to push back and offer other alternatives.


In_God_we_trust 1 year, 3 months ago

Instead of mandatory military service, how about utilizing the ROTC that is already on campus. Have them obtain security practice on a shooting range as a college class. They could also provide peace officer service to many buildings across campus.


bliddel 1 year, 3 months ago

Separating the fact from the emption is key to addressing this issue in a constructive manner.

Bad people with guns do bad things. Bad people get guns because they are bad people, and they do not obey gun laws, or laws about gun-free zones, or laws against murder, etc. Once a bad person begins doing something bad with a gun, the only effective way to stop the bad person is by a good person with a gun.

Taking all the guns away from good people (who do nothing bad with their guns) will only make it all the harder to stop bad people from continuing to do bad things with guns.

Furthermore, putting the Newtown tragedy in perspective, you are statistically about 160 times more likely to be shot by a cop than to be shot by anyone in a school setting. Should we disarm cops? Given the alarming frequency with which they have begun warrantless (SWAT) storm-troop nighttime raids on the wrong houses, with fatal results, I think so.

Every year, in the United States, far more young children are killed by drowning in swimming pools than by firearms violence, yet nobody has yet called for a ban on so-called assault-swimming pools. In December 2012, the drones over middle-east nations killed more innocent young children than in any mass school shooting ever. Nobody seems concerned that president Obama is a homicidal maniac – even though the statistics show that he must be exactly that. I call this the arrogance of selective indignation.

The second amendment is not about hunting, and not about self defense. The second amendment is about the right to overthrow a corrupt tyrannical government. History has shown many times (Hitler, late 1930s) that governments become corrupt and tyrannical right after they implement sweeping gun control legislation.

Somehow that does not fit my idea of the land of the free and the home of the brave.


yourworstnightmare 1 year, 3 months ago

"This is probably all academic anyway as Obama, Feinstein, Biden, etc are working feverishly to take our firearms away using the public outcry over the most recent school murder. "

Oh vey! Paranoid fantasies abound around this issue.


RoeDapple 1 year, 3 months ago

Gallup Poll: Americans Oppose Assault Weapons Ban, but Support Universal Background Checks

"A new Poll conducted by Gallup shows that 51 percent of Americans oppose a ban on semiautomatic firearms known as ‘assault’ rifles, proving that those who wish to renew a Clinton-era Assault Weapons Ban have a tough hill to climb.

By contrast, only 44 percent favor an outright ban on ‘assault weapons,’ a slight but statistically insignificant jump from the 42 percent that supported the ban in the last Gallup poll conducted on Dec. 18."

"In other good news for gun owners, a record-high 74 percent of poll participants oppose a ban on handguns, or as the poll stated, oppose preventing anyone but the police or other authorized officials from owning a handgun."


Lynn731 1 year, 3 months ago

The state capitol and other state buildings have retired, armed peace officers in plain clothes. They are paid by the Capitol Police. Every school should have either the same thing, or a uniformed school resource officer (a sworn peace officer). Personally I am in favor of law abiding citizens with a permit, or retired peace officers, having the right to carry in any building not equipped with metal detectors and law enforcement officers manning the equipment. This is probably all academic anyway as Obama, Feinstein, Biden, etc are working feverishly to take our firearms away using the public outcry over the most recent school murder.


Laus_Deo 1 year, 3 months ago

Americans never give up your guns 28.12.2012

By Stanislav Mishin

These days, there are few few things to admire about the socialist, bankrupt and culturally degenerating USA, but at least so far, one thing remains: the right to bare arms and use deadly force to defend one's self and possessions.

This will probably come as a total shock to most of my Western readers, but at one point, Russia was one of the most heavily armed societies on earth. This was, of course, when we were free under the Tsar. Weapons, from swords and spears to pistols, rifles and shotguns were everywhere, common items. People carried them concealed, they carried them holstered. Fighting knives were a prominent part of many traditional attires and those little tubes criss crossing on the costumes of Cossacks and various Caucasian peoples? Well those are bullet holders for rifles.


jimmyjms 1 year, 3 months ago

Surely this bill will also allow CC on the grounds of the Capitol and inside the legislature...


Brock Masters 1 year, 3 months ago

The irrational rants of some on here motivates me to email Senator to be Knox today and encourage him to pursue this legislation. Thankfully, with the purge of moderates this type of legislation has a good chance of becoming law.


gl0ck0wn3r 1 year, 3 months ago

Wow, what a terrible op-ed. It's not terrible because I disagree with the assertion made in the subhed but it is terrible because that is the only place in which it makes any assertion at all. The rest of it is just loosely strung together paragraphs with the last sentence restating the subhed.


BubbaSteel 1 year, 3 months ago

Parrothead8, I'm not sure why you find it interesting, but the break down of my personal experiences started when I was 7 years old and camping with my father in Northern California. At night while we were asleep in the trailer 2 men came around pounding on and woke us up. One stated "There are some bad eggs out here!" My father produced his .45, cocked it while the men watched through the windows and said "There's some bad eggs in here too.!" Both men literally hit the trails. In the military I was trained as a 95-B (Military Police) and stationed in a South American country smack dab in the middle of the U.S's war on drugs. As you can imagine I sometimes was on the wrong end of the gun myself as were other troops. We had to defend ourselves and American interest against professional, hardened opposition as opposed to the opportunistic scum that attacked us in my father's truck 11 years previously. Fast forward to the not too distant past and as I was walking home from the grocery store 4 blocks from my home I encountered several young men about half way home who decided to make sport of me by throwing beer bottles. I ignored the first one that hit my bag, and the second one that shattered in the street, but when a third wizzed past my head I set my groceries down, drew and cocked my pistol and drew down while stepping towards the db that just threw the bottle. They instantly became applogetic and polite when I asked it they wanted to throw another bottle at me. They were not sorry for what they did, they were sorry they picked the wrong guy to harrass with potentially fatal behavior. The fact that they didn't call the police proves they knew they were breaking the law. I didn't report it either which is another reason I belive statistics can't be accurate because alot of crimes stopped with ccws are not reported. The final time was just two house's down for me this Spring. A house party was crashed and a mob of close to 40 people spilled out into the neighborhood. I am sure I'm not the only one who called the police, but in the 3 minutes it took them to arrive I had stopped several men from beating a man that was already down, chased away wanna be gangstas from my property, and covered people wanting to escape this mini riot. When the police arrived and saw me guarding my home, armed, they had no problem with it at all. It took 9 of them to restore order. I'm not saying my demeanor helped but I think it proves we ccw holders are not blood thristy hooligans waiting for a chance to shoot someone, just people who are security consious and belive in that being prepaired thing. I never thought there would be a riot next to my house, but I was prepaired and did what I could to protect life even while displaying the power to take it.


Jackie Jackasserson 1 year, 3 months ago

Had a student one semester so upset with his grade he sent threatening emails and harassed every person he could up the chain of command. Had he been armed, well his rant may have been shorter but more deadly.


Brock Masters 1 year, 3 months ago

One thing overlooked in reporting on the Knox bill is that there is a provision on banning concealed carry in public buildings provided they offer security.

I am weary about hearing about other nations. Yes, they have very strict laws against gun ownership, but the one thing they don't have is the 2nd amendment. Want to ban guns? Then step up and repeal the 2nd amendment and then we can be just like Europe.


Water 1 year, 3 months ago

What if KU were to allow only females to possess a firearm on campus? It could be set up as a social science project for a period of years then the results published.


BubbaSteel 1 year, 3 months ago

KU should be a leader in things other then our school of medicine. Cowering over a newly worded "The streets will run red with blood." excuse is a lame way to show mature students who are consious of their personal security that they are safe on campus. I'm sick of all the cliche arguments. Debates take place over facts, not emotions. Also where you get the facts makes little difference to a person like me who has been sucessfully defended by a firearm once as a child, several times in my military history, and twice less then two blocks from my own home. Not even taking into accound the daily protection citiziens recieve from armed police and our military. Yeah, I'm biased and yes I believe that it's ultimately our own responsiblity to defend ourselves from threats. The boy scouts got it right with their motto "Be prepaired." which is something KU does not seem to be.


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